Diallassagou Massacre

Article

July 5, 2022

The Diallassagou massacre takes place on June 18, 2022, during the Mali war. It is committed by jihadists from the Katiba Macina, a group affiliated with the Support Group for Islam and Muslims, in the town of Diallassagou, in the Circle of Bankass. The jihadists then kidnap more than a hundred civilians accused of having helped the Malian army and execute them.

Background

For several years, the circle of Bankass has been the scene of violence between the jihadists of the Katiba Macina, mainly from the Fulani community, and the Dogon militias - in particular Dan Na Ambassagou - supported by the Malian army. The constituencies of Bankass and Koro, along the border with Burkina Faso, are paying a heavy price. "After repeated attacks in 2019, the Fulani villages have almost all emptied there," said an international UN official in Bamako. In February 2021, a local inter-community peace agreement was reached, silencing the guns for a time and allowing residents to move freely. Although skirmishes are reported from time to time, the peace agreements are respected by the jihadists and Dan Na Ambassagou. But after the fall of the government of Ibrahim Boubacar Keïta, the seizure of power by the military and the reign of Assimi Goïta, the junta increased military operations against the jihadists in central Mali with the help of the Russian forces of the Group Wagner. In parallel with the military operations, the massacres of the junta against civilians supposed to be favorable to the jihadists are increasing, culminating in the Moura massacre where between 300 and 600 civilians are massacred. At the beginning of June, the Malian army and the Wagner Group launched several operations against the jihadists in the circle of Bankass with the help of Dogon civilians serving as scouts. Several Fulani villages such as Dokouro or Ayalema are looted by the Malian army, water points destroyed, livestock has been stolen, as well as property belonging to the populations such as jewelry and money. Extra-judicial executions against civilians are also recorded. After the end of the military operations and this rupture of the peace agreements, a commander of the GSIM would have launched a call to arms and many Fulani expelled from the region in 2019 by the Dogons answered the call.

Procedure

On June 18, the jihadists attacked the town of Diallassagou, as well as the localities of Diamweli and Dessagou. The attack was reportedly carried out in retaliation for the breach of the February 2021 peace agreement and the jihadists allegedly blamed the inhabitants of Diallassagou for having helped the Malian army by serving as informants or guides during its operations, . According to Nouhoum Togo, president of a Bankass party, dozens of jihadists on motorcycles arrived in Diallassagou on the evening of June 17. He gives the following account to AFP: “They arrived and told people: you are not Muslims in the Fulani language. So they took the men away, a hundred people left with them. Two kilometers away, they shot people systematically. Even today, we continued to pick up the bodies in the surrounding municipalities of Diallassagou”. RFI indicates for its part that according to several local and security sources, the jihadists arise in Diallassagou on June 18 at 4 p.m., and do not withdraw until the middle of the night. Men are abducted and then executed in various places in the surrounding area. The market, homes, shops and several vehicles are set on fire. The jihadists leave, taking with them several heads of cattle. Several hundred residents fled, most in the direction of the town of Bankass, about forty kilometers away.

Sequels

On June 19, the commune of Ségué was targeted.